Argento: cosa sta succedendo?


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Come tutti già saprete, in questi giorni l'argento sta facendo scintille (40% di guadagno secco dal 10 novembre) :eek:
Ora, leggendo qua e là sembra che una parte dei problemi sia imputabile a uno sciopero nelle miniere messicane (le più ricche al mondo), ma la questione di fondo sta nel fatto che, mentre l'oro non si consuma, l'argento invece viene usato a piene mani nell'industria, con il risultato che, mentre fino a pochi anni fa l'argento estratto era pari a 5 volte l'oro, ora è vera la situazione contraria :eek:
Ergo, attualmente l'argento disponibile è ai livelli di quanto presente nel 1300 circa.
A fronte di tutto questo, alcuni (non i soliti folli) prevedono un prezzo finale dell'argento attorno ai 100$ all'oncia.
Cosa ne pensate?
Avete altre informazioni di prima mano?
Attila61 ha scritto:
Avete altre informazioni di prima mano?

Di prima mano no.
Per la situazione generale, che hai già delineato tu, puoi leggere gli articoli di Ted Butler:

Materiale interessate pure nella sezione free di Hommel, anche se quando si lancia in speculazioni sui target dei metalli pare essersi fatto di qualcosa...:D

La sovraperformance dell'argento rispetto all'oro negli ultimi tempi è probabilmente dovuta alle aspettative per l'etf sull'argento, che pare imminente.
Secondo me il risvegliarsi della domanda da investimento sarebbe il maggior fattore per una salita spettacolare delle quotazioni.
Il mercato dell'argento, comprendendovi pure le società produttrici, è molto piccolo rispetto ai capitali finanziari che circolano oggi.
Una minima parte di questi flussi che si indirizzasse sul silver avrebbe enorme impatto.
Viceversa, il pericolo peggiore sarebbe una crisi economica che ne riducesse la richiesta industriale.
Giusto, mi ero scordato dell'ETF :rolleyes:
Devo smetterla di fumarmi anche le cartine del cioccolato, tanto son goloso, che poi mi fanno male :D
Staremo a vedere, grazie ;)

Monday, May 08, 2006

Since silver has recently risen so much in the past six months, from about $8 to as high as nearly $15/oz., it's time to review the fundamentals. I will back up each point with a link, so that you don't have to trust me, but so you can confirm the facts, and do your own research.

On February 3, 1998, Warren Buffet announced that Berkshire Hathaway bought 129,710,000 ounces of silver due to the fundamentals of supply and demand.

Warren wrote: In recent years, widely-published reports have shown that bullion inventories have fallen very materially, because of an excess of user-demand over mine production and reclamation. Therefore, last summer Mr. Buffett and Mr. Munger, Vice Chairman of Berkshire, concluded that equilibrium between supply and demand was only likely to be established by a somewhat higher price.

Those reports were likely the studies by the silver institute, or the CPM group, both sponsored by the silver industry.

The survey by costs $195

The survey by costs $150, 162 pages.

These are the studies that show a deficit of silver for about the past 15 years. Recently, they have shown a surplus. But that term, "surplus" is misleading, and confusing. The surplus is really another term for "investor buying", and deficit means "investor selling".

The actual numbers are very rough, but about 650 million ounces of silver are mined each year, and about 200 million ounces come from scrap recycling, and about 100 million ounces used to come from investor selling, or government selling. That's a total of about 950 million ounces.

Of that, about 42% is consumed by industrial use, about 28% consumed by jewelry, 20% consumed by photography, 5% consumed in coins and medallions, and that's 95% of total available silver each year! This implies either a "surplus", or "investment demand", of about 5% of the total, or about 42 million ounces--for 2004.

In other words, there is no room in the silver market for any significant investor demand of any significant monetary or investment size, of say, over $500 million.

The main problem with these reports, I have felt, was that they were, in fact, not widely publicized. At the mining shows, I polled people who would attend my "silver investment workshops", and only about 5 people in 100 would raise their hand to indicate that they had even heard of those silver surveys by those groups.

And further, the reports had a bias against guessing about potential monetary demand, even to this day, describing investment demand as a "surplus". That one word is clearly a biased term, since it implies that the world has more silver than it knows what to do with. But if investors cannot find, or cannot buy, as much as they would like, then we do not have any surplus, there is a shortage!

Here are two U.S. Government produced reports on silver, containing data from 1900, on U.S. & world production, and U.S. consumption, and U.S. industry & government stockpiles.

Report #1
Report #2

I evaluated these government reports in my silver stock report #36.

In sum, we are running out of silver. The U.S. government had over 3 billion ounces of silver in 1940, and today, has very little left, or none.

On May 14th, 2004, the silver shortage was confirmed by the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) in a 9-page report that outlined the known facts of the bullish case for silver. They failed, in my opinion, to defend the excessive short positions and unfair rules in futures trading as "non-manipulative".

The CFTC is supposed to oversee and prevent market manipulation and defaults.

Michael Gorham, director of the CFTC, wrote that a short side price manipulation could not persist for long, as long as there is "unrestricted access to the market, [because] many knowledgeable and well-capitalized traders would readily buy any silver offered at artificially low prices." (4th paragraph, page 5) Michael Gorham, in the same report, in paragraph 3 on page 8, then contradicted his earlier statement by defending the position limits that prevent unrestricted access to the silver market. Michael Gorham then resigned from the CFTC about 3 weeks later.

Limits, of course, are evidence of shortages, by definition. Limits on what you can buy with your own money are a severe restriction of freedom, and are thus totally contrary to basic free market principles. Limits are a manipulation, and distortion of freedom.

What are the position limits? At the NYMEX, there is a position limit of 1500 contracts per person or entity per month (which is a limit of 7.5 million oz. of silver). Furthermore, total silver deliveries to all market participants may be limited to 1.5 million ounces in any given delivery month! Apparently, sellers can sell as many contracts as they wish, but buyers are severely limited.

These limits prevent large billionaires, such as Warren Buffet, from accumulating 100 million ounces of silver. He was very wise, and fortunate to acquire what he was able to buy. Some of you may think that is a good thing to restrict large buyers. But, in reality, restricting market freedom creates market distortions. In fact, the limits actually discourage large investment. And the functioning futures market gives the impression that plenty of silver is available.

And this brings me to the other bias. You, or more accurately, they, THEY, can sell silver that does not exist. Short sellers do not need to have silver, in order to make a promise for delivery and enter into a futures contract. How can they do that? Easy. Just promise. Just like a dollar is a promise. Just like politicians make promises. And just like those promises are broken, so, too, with the silver futures contract promises.

As long as investors don't take delivery of physical silver, they can get away with it. For a long time, only 1% of futures contracts resulted in delivery. Today, it is increasing toward 10% or more, which is growing ominous.

How many promises are made? You have to look at the total open interest in the CFTC Commitment of Traders report.

That report, as of May 6th, 2006, shows, in the bottom right corner: Open Interest: 167,853. That's how many futures contracts are "open", and each contract is for 5000 ounces. So that's 837 million ounces of silver, promised to be delivered, on the NYMEX. But how much do they have to deliver?

How much silver is available? At the NYMEX, they tell you.

as of close of business: 05/05/2006
Total Registered 72,827,606
Total Eligible 50,800,886
"Registered" means that the silver is ready to be delivered against a silver futures contract--but this, in no way implies that the owners want to sell it immediately, it could be held for long term investment.
"Eligible" means it is not yet registered for delivery, and may be held by longer-term investors.

Clearly, they cannot deliver over 800 million ounces, when they barely have 100 million ounces altogether or much less (as much of that silver could be held by long term investors who may be reading this report). This means that if the paper longs ask for, and pay for, full delivery, it could result in what they call a "short squeeze", or "corner", where the price will rise furiously fast. The shorts must buy back, or "cover", their "naked" positions in the silver futures contracts, at potentially higher and higher prices, or even at prices that may well rise further than we can imagine. If the longs ask for more silver than is available, and do not sell, then it becomes impossible to cover or deliver, and then, some people will not get their silver. If silver cannot be delivered, it's called a market default, like a bankruptcy. A silver short would then lose everything he possesses; his house, car, boat, yacht, trading account, business, everything.

Trading in futures contracts is how Barrings Bank, an institution with about $500 million and about a hundred year history went bankrupt by one trader in Singapore, which you can see in the movie, "Rogue Trader", starring Ewan McGregor.

NYMEX is not the only place where silver futures are traded in the world. There is also the London Metal Exchange (LME) , which is reported to have even more paper trading, and even less physical silver. The third largest exchanges is the Shanghai Metal Exchange (SHME) There is also, the Toyko Commodity Exchange (TOCOM). There are also other, newer futures exchanges such as in Dubai . There is also the "over the counter" market, which is unregulated. I suppose if you buy silver from a local coin shop, and he promises to deliver silver in 3 days, that is also a type of unregulated futures contract.

Various experts have maintained that the entire world supply of above ground, refined, deliverable silver is about 300 million ounces.

Others have estimated that the remaining above ground silver may be as large as 4 billion ounces, with humanity having consumed as much as 37 billion ounces out of 40 billion ounces of silver mined in all of human history.

Most silver has been consumed in the age of electronics, which began right after World War II, and since then, modern industrialized nations have consumed about 6/10ths of an ounce of silver, per person, per year.

Ominously, this week, 42 million ounces of silver were bought by the Silver ETF in the first 5 days of trading!

Some people are extremely skeptical that the Silver ETF custodian has actually received physical silver yet, myself included. I think the "Authorized Participants" who sell iShares, and who must deliver silver, have bought paper contracts, as that is what it says they can do in the Barclays iShares Silver Trust SEC Application (June 2005)

See page 23 in the Application, "Deposit of Silver; Issuance of Baskets of iShares." It says:

If the trustee accepts the purchase order, it will transmit to the Authorized Participant, via facsimile or electronic mail message, no later than 5:00 p.m. (New York time) on the date such purchase order is received, or deemed received, a copy of the purchase order endorsed “Accepted” by the trustee and indicating the Basket Silver Amount that the Authorized Participant must deliver to the custodian in exchange for each Basket.

In other words, Barclays, the trustee, accepts a purchase order, and then issues iShares. The trustee does not first receive silver, and then issue iShares, they issue iShares first, upon receipt of a purchase order to buy silver! So, a potential market maker for the Silver ETF first buys futures contracts, then presents the futures contracts to the Silver ETF, and then gets iShares to sell, which are sold immediately to people who buy the Silver ETF.

It takes a long, long time, to arrange physical delivery of 42 million ounces of silver. It took CEF, the Central Fund of Canada, months to acquire 8 million ounces, and transportation arrangements take time. A convoy of up to 50 armored trucks takes time to arrange, as well as the decoy convoys. Due to the excess paper futures contracts, I wonder if the custodian of the ETF will actually end up taking delivery, without creating a short squeeze, or market default.

Thus, within a month or so, more or less, I suppose it's quite possible to see silver prices hit as high as $35 per ounce, or higher. After all, oil went up from $10 to $70, and if silver moved up 7 times like that, it would move up from $5 to $35, just to keep up with oil.

Most interestingly, this kind of price action was feared by the Silver User's Association, who opposed the creation of the Silver ETF, and who asked the SEC to not approve this ETF.

The SUA's position: "The Silver Users Association opposes the creation of a silver ETF because of the concerns that doing so will require the holding of physical silver be held in allocated accounts, thus removing large amounts of silver from the market. By doing so, the ETF will cause a shortage of silver in the marketplace."

Now, I'm not predicting that silver will rise to $35 and stop. Oh no. Why would it? Would the shortage somehow miraculously end? No. Would the demand by industry suddenly stop? No.

Demand is inelastic. Such small quantities of silver are used in electronic switches that a rise in the silver price will have little effect on demand. A washing machine uses about 15-20 silver-coated switches. Will people stop buying washing machines? The Chinese are now probably buying and producing more washing machines than in the U.S.!

Supply is also inelastic. 70% of silver produced each year comes to market as a by-product of gold, copper, zinc, or lead mining. Further, new silver mines, or any new mines, in most cases, take years to go from exploration to production, from 5 to 10 to even 15 years. Some of the best silver projects today were first explored in the last silver boom, in 1980. In fact, the year 1980 saw less silver production than 1979. Mine supply comes on stream rather slowly.

Oil is different from silver. As oil prices rise, people begin to think about alternatives such as nuclear, wind, solar, or newer technologies, or conservation. And there has never been a mass movement by the public to go out to buy $7000 worth of oil, in 100 barrels, to store on the front lawn. Instead, people turn to silver and gold to protect themselves from rising prices--because people can carry and store silver and gold.

And as silver and gold prices rise, it attracts investors, who see the track record of annual percentage returns. Why should investors hold bonds paying 1-4% (during a time when inflation is 7-10%), when there is the alternative of silver which will be rising 60%-100% per year for several years in a row, or more?

With silver, for over 100 years, decreased monetary demand created lower prices, which created decreased monetary demand. Today, with the supply/demand balance leaving no room for increased investment demand, with low inventories, any slight increase in investment or monetary demand, will quickly lead to higher prices and ever more monetary demand.

To protect their wealth from the effects of inflation and paper money devaluation, investors will buy silver, without regard to price.

Higher prices, and slightly increased investment demand, is exactly what we are seeing right now.

Panic short covering has not yet started. About a week ago, open interest was larger, at 200,000 contracts. Some of the shorts were able to cover at slightly lower prices this week. They were very, very fortunate. Soon, they will be panic covering, buying futures contracts back, at ever higher prices, which is what happens in a short squeeze.

In sum, the fundamentals will likely stay in place for a long, long time to come. It will take years for new mines to come to production, and produce enough silver to cool off the investment panic that is now just beginning.

In the past, when silver was plentiful, about 100 years ago, a silver dime, quarter, or dollar was a day's wage. Due to the shortage, such a small amount of silver could well be worth a week's wage in the future.

The real fundamental is that paper money is fraud. It is a failed promise, a broken promise to deliver silver or gold. Very soon, in my opinion, the last form of paper promises to deliver silver or gold will also fail. At that point, people stop believing promises, and people will turn to gold and silver, which are not promises, but payment in full. And that kind of fundamental shift in awareness can last a generation.

There is no need to fear a price spike in silver, or a drastic drop. The bigger fear ought to be that even though you know all of this, silver prices will rise swiftly past $100/oz., before you decide to buy all that you want, and will continue to grind ever higher, for decades to come.

For more information, you might want to register for the Silver Summit this year in Idaho. It will be the best mining conference of the year.
September 21st - 22nd, 2006 Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
September 23rd - 24th, 2006 Wallace, Idaho (Optional Fun)

Jason Hommel

FMNN Silver-Is-Wealth Strategist
Alpine ski racer
Widely published precious metals indy analyst

Tuesday, May 09, 2006


Today, I received word from about 15 of my subscribers that Warren Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway has sold their pile of nearly 130 million ounces silver. Five different news articles tell a similar story, that Warren admits he sold the silver.}

This is very bullish for silver, because it explains why silver's rise took longer than we thought (Warren was selling), and it also means that there is much less silver above ground than we thought. Buffett's hoard of 130 million ounces no longer exists! Clearly, Warren made a mistake, and he seems to admit it when he says that he sold silver too soon. I always suspected that Warren did not understand gold or silver too well.

Buffett emphasized the 'non-productive"(?) aspect of gold in 1998 at Harvard: "It gets dug out of the ground in Africa, or someplace. Then we melt it down, dig another hole, bury it again and pay people to stand around guarding it. It has no utility. Anyone watching from Mars would be scratching their head."

I answered Buffett's conundrum on gold, why men keep it vaults, in my article, "Refuting Myths about Gold", in 2003.

He must have never read it. It took me about 10 seconds to think up the answer to refute Buffett's myth, numbered 28 in the article (but it took me about 2 years to compile and write the full article):

28. It does not make sense to dig up gold from the ground, and bury it again deep in the ground in a vault:

Yes, it does. Gold is kept in the vault because gold is valuable and rare, and thus, it needs to be protected from theft. You wouldn't want your property to be stolen, would you? Gold ownership also prevents theft from inflation, and from banking collapses during depressions, which happen under paper money systems.

I really feel sorry for Mr. Buffett. He complains he has $40 billion and does not know what to do with it, or how to protect it from inflation. He recently tried buying foreign currency with it, but that does not work either, when all currencies are overvalued frauds. Too bad Mr. Buffett. Buffett's confusion must be due to God himself, or perhaps senility. As the Bible says, "God is not mocked", but perhaps Gold is not to be mocked, either.

Before, I had given Mr. Buffet the benefit of the doubt. I had thought that his line about the uselessness of Gold was clever dis-information, as foolish traders sometimes try to talk down an investment while accumulating. But it appears he is just ignorant about one of the most fundamental aspects about the nature of Gold, after all.

The fundamentals of silver have nothing to do with supply and demand after all. The fundamental nature of silver is that it is different from paper, and paper is no substitute. Gold's use is that it keeps men honest! Gold provides a method for peaceful and non-fraudulent beneficial trade among men.

What is so special about gold? I'll tell you once again, (from

Gold is money because it is liquid because it is easily tradable, with a narrow spread between the prices to buy and sell (about 1%). Also, gold is easily transportable, because it has a high value for its weight. This makes gold an excellent medium of exchange.

Gold is money because it is divisible, you can divide it into coins, or re-melt it into bars, without destroying it. Also, gold is fungible, where each unit of .999 fine gold (99.9% pure) is similar enough to another unit so as to be easily interchangeable. Gold is also nearly impossible to counterfeit, and genuine gold is easily recognizable. When measured by weight, gold is easily countable. These properties make gold an excellent unit of account.

Gold is money because it is a great store of value. Gold is not subject to decay, rot, or rust. Gold has an intrinsic value in itself, because it is rare, highly coveted the world over, and is a luxury item.

Silver has all the same characteristics, except silver is heavier by value, (cheaper per ounce). (Silver is actually less dense, and lighter than gold per unit volume, which prevents counterfeiting coins by plating silver coins with gold). Silver is also more rare than gold, in above-ground, refined, deliverable form. Silver is more useful to industry than is gold, as silver is used in more applications than any other item except, perhaps, oil.

Buffett's problem is a pitfall I've worried that my subscribers would fall into. The danger is selling too soon, due to not knowing why you bought precious metal in the first place. For example, what if you sell gold as gold rises to $3000 per ounce, on its way to $30,000 per ounce? Well, between $300 and $3000, you'd make ten times your money. And then, between $3000 and $30,000, you'd give back all your gains, and be no better off. This is why I've personally risked my reputation, by writing "outlandish" articles about how and why gold can rise to infinity dollar per ounce! (As paper money dies.)

Future Gold & Silver Prices --December 21, 2005
Why no talk of $32,567/oz ? - 02 January 2003

During the past 7 years, I've closely watched many items that are bullish for gold and silver; most notably, who is covering them, and how good is the coverage. Finally, the New York Times covers gold in a somewhat positive way. This is no time to call a top, just because they are covering gold. (Many old gold bugs believe you should sell gold if the NY Times gives it coverage.) After all, the Times is still at the bottom of the learning curve, in my opinion, and still rather skeptical of the facts about gold, and the nature of gold, somewhat like Mr. Buffett. But the interesting thing about the Times is that many newspapers follow stories that the Times covers, and so, we may see the beginning of greater coverage about gold in the U.S. national press, and we may see gold prices rise substantially as a result.

This article was sent to me in email by several sources. Key excerpts below:

Finding Comfort (and New Friends) in Gold

By Landon Thomas Jr.
The New York Times
Sunday, May 7, 2006

SHARON, Connecticut -- ...

Their passion notwithstanding, gold bugs tend to be small-time investors. Gold's recent surge has instead been underpinned by a rush of mainstream investors, including hedge funds, commodity-based mutual funds, and exchange-traded funds.

For these investors, gold is less a way of life than it is hedge against inflation and a prudent measure of diversification during an increasingly worrisome time. The extent to which this new wave of capital remains invested in gold will determine if the recent spike is just another anomaly or the onset of the second coming of the great gold bull market that the true believers have been calling for since the price of gold crashed a quarter-century ago.


With their missionary zeal and weakness for conspiracy theories, gold lovers can seem a touch afflicted. They also collect and pass around offbeat, brain-teasing findings. One is that the dollar has lost 98 percent of its value since 1913, when the Federal Reserve System was established. Another is an assertion by the American Institute for Economic Research, an obscure research outfit in Great Barrington, Mass., that since 1945 inflation has eroded $15.8 trillion from the savings accounts of United States citizens.

Both findings underscore their benchmark precept: that a currency not tied to gold becomes debased when central banks print money and governments spend freely. Perhaps Alan Greenspan, who before his run as chairman of the Federal Reserve was highly regarded in gold-bug circles, captured this point best. "In the absence of the gold standard, there is no way to protect savings from confiscation through inflation," he wrote in 1966, when he was an economic consultant. "Gold stands in the way of this insidious process."

The great liquidity explosion that occurred under Mr. Greenspan has made him a turncoat in the eyes of the gold-bug crowd. But his successor, Ben. S. Bernanke, or "Helicopter Ben" as they call him, inflames its passions all the more. To this group, Mr. Bernanke's passing allusion -- before he became Fed chairman -- to a helicopter dropping money over a recession-bound economy confirmed its deepest fears that a monetary system not anchored by gold was essentially inflationary if not downright immoral.


Like Mr. Sinclair, William J. Murphy III is also a Wall Street refugee. After a one-year stint in 1968 as a wide receiver for the New England Patriots, he began a career as a commodities trader, working for a number of firms, including Shearson and Drexel Burnham. Convinced that the price of gold was being suppressed by an unholy alliance between the central banks and major investment banks, he formed the Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee, known as GATA, that seeks to publicize facts and assertions that support his point -- namely that the gold reserves in central banks are significantly overstated.

GATA for the most part is a one-man show -- Mr. Murphy, dressed in his sweatsuit, perched in front of the computer in his home in suburban Dallas. With his excitable manner and his outré theories about gold, he is generally thought to exist on the outer fringe of the gold-bug movement.

Indeed, his central thesis -- that Goldman Sachs and other banks have conspired to keep a cap on the price via short sales to back the government's strong-dollar policy, especially while a former Goldman senior partner, Robert E. Rubin, was Treasury secretary in the late 1990s -- is far-fetched.

With the price of gold surging, Mr. Murphy is convinced that Goldman Sachs, J. P. Morgan, and others are frantically buying now to cover for the gold they sold short over the years. Goldman Sachs and J. P. Morgan declined to comment about their gold trading positions or strategies.

"What a day," Mr. Murphy said one day last week as gold broke through $670. Goldman Sachs and J. P. Morgan were big buyers that day on Comex, the division of the New York Mercantile Exchange where gold contracts trade. Sputtering at the joy of it all, Mr. Murphy could well have been a prospector hitting the Mother Lode. "These guys are short, and they are panicking to get out of their positions," he said. "They are sweating bullets, and it couldn't happen to a nicer bunch of guys."

There is a kernel of truth to what Mr. Murphy says. Central banks have been aggressive sellers of gold, especially in the late 1990s, when gold was touching record lows. But most economists say that there was no grand design involved, just a badly timed attempt to shift into higher-yielding assets like bonds.

As for investment banks, they are sellers and buyers of any given asset at any given time. But it is also true that they have hardly been enthusiastic advocates for gold as an investment, especially when the stock market was king. Even now, as they have issued positive reports about the metal, their price targets seem oddly out of sync with its relentless rise.

Goldman's forecast for a year-end price is $625 an ounce; J. P. Morgan's target, which is currently under review, is $560, and Morgan Stanley's is $550.

Compared with Mr. Murphy and his boylike excitability, James Turk speaks with an assured gravity consistent with his background as a commercial banker at Chase Manhattan. But his views about gold as the ultimate store of value in a financial world on the verge of collapse are no less doctrinaire.

Indeed, Mr. Turk has established his own online payment system,, through which he and his fellow gold bugs may enjoy the thrill of buying goods and services via gold, not cash.

In some ways it is a symbolic exercise. While the payment system is supported by $100 million worth of gold, no merchants have agreed to take bullion as payment, although Mr. Turk hopes that day may come. More than anything else, the site demonstrates his disdain for the dollar and all other forms of paper money -- a view that he often heard from his parents, who experienced the ravages of hyperinflation in Austria in the 1920s.

"It's not gold going up; it's the dollar going down," Mr. Turk said by phone from Australia, where he was speaking at an investment conference. Gold has held its value much better than the dollar against commodities like oil, he said.

With oil hitting new highs -- it has hovered around $70 a barrel for weeks -- Mr. Turk foresees a return to the 1970s, when high inflation and a volatile Middle East drove gold to its peak. "If we get close to $850 this year, it's most probable that we will see a four-digit gold price in 2007," he said. Four-digit gold -- an ounce of bullion selling for $1,000 or more -- is the gold bugs' equivalent of a visit from the Messiah.

But for the growing number of hedge funds that are piling into the commodity, gold is less a virtuous investment than it is a mercenary one.

China and India are buying more gold. Iran is becoming more bellicose in its stand toward the West. And, most important, liquidity is making a broad shift to commodities and out of stocks.

"Do I think that gold is God? No," said Monty Guild, who runs Guild Investment Management, a hedge fund in Malibu, Calif. "I'm a gold opportunist. When it's good, we like it; when it's not, we stay away. Gold does well during wars, and we believe there will be more wars."

And for those not in gold, or any other highflying commodity, for that matter, the feeling can be lonely. William H. Miller III, portfolio manager of the $19 billion Legg Mason Value Trust, which has beaten the Standard & Poor's 500-stock index for 15 consecutive years, has no gold in the fund. His view is that inflationary expectations, if not prices themselves, remain quiescent, and that gold -- like oil, emerging markets, and small-cap stocks before it -- has become the latest investment craze, propelled upward by a wave of hot money, a term for speculative short-term capital.

"Gold certainly looks extended from here," said Mr. Miller, whose fund is currently trailing the S.& P. 500 for the year. "It's easy to make money when you are trend-following," he added. "But if you are worried that the end is near, the last thing I want is gold because of all the hot money."

Jason Hommel

FMNN Silver-Is-Wealth Strategist
Alpine ski racer
Widely published precious metals indy analyst
Le silver stocks underperformano l'argento tutte... questo perchè è in corso uno switch... si vendono silver stocks e la liquidità entra nell'ETF... l'ETF fa alzare il prezzo che a sua volta farà alzare le Silver Stocks.... farà.

Ottimi affari... e siamo all'inizio.
Questo è quanto scrivono W: Buffett e C. Munger in occasione dell'assemblea degli azionisti l'altra settimana:

Dovessi scegliere tra lo scetticismo di Buffett e la bullishness di certi commenti, sceglierei sicuramente il primo, scrivere oro a 30.000$/oncia e come chi vedeva il nasdaq a 10000 nel 1999...


WEB: There is no bubble in the agricultural commodities, wheat, or corn, but metals, copper, yes. Like most trends, first fundamentals start then the speculation takes over. “What the wise do in the beginning, the fool does at the end.” The famous case of Tulip bulbs. My guess is we’re seeing some of that in metals.

CTM: We’ve demonstrated our lack of knowledge in silver.

WEB: I bought early, and sold early. As Adam Smith (Goodman) said: “The problem with Cinderella’s ball, it turns to pumpkins and mice at midnight, and there are no clocks on the wall.”
greg ha scritto:
Di prima mano no.
Per la situazione generale, che hai già delineato tu, puoi leggere gli articoli di Ted Butler:

Materiale interessate pure nella sezione free di Hommel, anche se quando si lancia in speculazioni sui target dei metalli pare essersi fatto di qualcosa...:D

La sovraperformance dell'argento rispetto all'oro negli ultimi tempi è probabilmente dovuta alle aspettative per l'etf sull'argento, che pare imminente.
Secondo me il risvegliarsi della domanda da investimento sarebbe il maggior fattore per una salita spettacolare delle quotazioni.
Il mercato dell'argento, comprendendovi pure le società produttrici, è molto piccolo rispetto ai capitali finanziari che circolano oggi.
Una minima parte di questi flussi che si indirizzasse sul silver avrebbe enorme impatto.
Viceversa, il pericolo peggiore sarebbe una crisi economica che ne riducesse la richiesta industriale.
The Silver Investor Looks at
the Silver ETF Past and Future

by David Morgan
Precious Metals Analyst
May 10, 2006

Many pundits have written about the Silver ETF and of course we also had our say. We thought it best to put into the public record our exact thoughts from the past as presented in our monthly reports before commenting further. As the reader will determine we presented some interesting points and we were not completely correct in our opinions, but as usual did our best to present information that would not only be useful to our subscribers but also give them pause to ponder the longer-term implications.

From the December 2005 issue of “The Morgan Report” the following was written:

“We have continued our investigation into the Silver ETF and decided to give our views both for and against. Originally we stated that we thought the fund would be beneficial for the silver market, and we still hold this view; however, more details are required behind our thinking.

The first and most important fact to address is that the Silver ETF and all ETFs, to our knowledge, are cash settled. This simply means that the underlying asset may be there in various forms, but the investor in the fund can only accept cash as payment. This of course is true of Central Fund of Canada, as we have mentioned previously.

What the proposed Silver ETF requires is real silver, but not necessarily new purchased silver. In fact the proposed amount for this issue is about 130 million ounces of silver to begin. This is almost exactly the amount reportedly purchased by Berkshire Hathaway in 1997. We have absolutely no inside knowledge but wish to illustrate a point. Suppose a large holder of real silver were to “pledge” the metal under some type of derivative scenario. The ETF would be up and running, and real metal would be “behind” the transaction.

This would qualify and would not really cause any new silver purchases to take place. So in effect, new money would come into the silver market but it would not necessarily require new silver to be purchased. However, that would just be at the beginning, and if the silver ETF showed the kind of participation the gold ETF enjoyed, more and more real silver would be demanded and this would be difficult to supply at some point. So, eventually, new metal would be required to back the ETF and at that point, the effect of a tight supply should manifest in price pressure. However, the cash settlement process avoids any settlement problems.

Currently, we think the Silver ETF will not be approved, and the reasons will be that it is too small a market and gold is a unique case. Gold has enough aboveground supplies and fairly wide market breadth, unlike silver, which is a very tiny market. If we are correct and this news becomes widespread, it should still help the silver market, because those paying close attention may view this as confirmation that silver supplies are indeed tight and new silver purchases may take place.

Another key factor is that some enterprising group or individual might start a private fund with characteristics similar to the proposed silver ETF. Barclays Capital could even start a silver ETF outside of the U.S. markets without SEC approval, in England for example.

As the Texas Hedge article by T. Stein and S. McIntyre pointed out, if the silver ETF turned out to be as popular as the gold ETF, it would generate billions in demand. Each billion dollars in new demand is equal to 125 million ounces in demand. Two or three billion in today’s world is nothing; each billion-worth of purchases would equal the entire Comex supply. Several questions remain, and we will continue to monitor the situation as it develops.” End quote.

Later in the April 2006 report we stated the following,

“Many times we have stated whatever is good for the gold market will eventually become good for the silver market. For example, James Turk had and only worked with gold, but as we know, now deals in silver as well. The gold ETF was begun and we all know the silver ETF is one step closer with the SEC approving the AMEX listing with a rule change. Barclays now will submit a registration statement to the SEC for approval. Once approved, the silver shares can begin trading; this could happen in a few weeks or may take months. We will have to wait and see.

Opinions run the gamut. For example, Bill Murphy of the Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee states, “I am no fan of this ETF, because Barclays is behind it. Barclays has been the most notorious gold bear for the last five years and has been WRONG for the last five years. Even now they are calling for $350 gold within two years. I don’t trust them with this ETF any more than I can throw them.”

Others see the silver ETF as a huge opportunity for both institutional investors and individual investors to participate in the silver market. According to the documentation, the silver ETF will be backed by physical silver held in allocated accounts.

The main question is how much silver will be bought through this vehicle? It is our guess that perhaps 25 million ounces of silver will be required within a relatively short time once the iShares Silver Trust shares begin trading. The gold ETF has about 15.5 million ounces of gold currently. This is approximately $8.25 billion. Since gold is much more accepted as an investment, we do not expect silver to have the same amount of demand as gold, at least not initially.

However, once established, interest in silver and silver investing should pick up quickly; we see at least one-tenth of the amount of money going into the gold ETF going into the silver ETF. This would imply almost a billion dollars, which, at $10 silver, is equivalent to 100 million ounces of silver, or 25 million more ounces of silver than the bullion dealers have at the Comex (73M in the registered category).

CPM Group has stated, “One of the misunderstandings common in the silver market is that there are hundreds of millions of ounces of silver in inventories in London and Zurich. There is not nearly that much. There may be between 75 and 100 million ounces in these bank vaults as of early 2006.”

We agree with CPM and think that between what Berkshire Hathaway holds in London (100 million ounces?) and what the European banks hold (another 100 million), maybe 200 million ounces of bullion exists throughout Europe. No one is certain of the exact number or if Warren Buffett still is holding silver, but we think he still does. The point is, silver is in tight supply and the silver ETF should exert upward pressure on the price, especially as some gold investors start to move into the silver ETF, either as spread trading or outright new long positions.

We picked up an interesting fact about the silver ETF reading the full document file. According to this filing, “Authorized Participants that wish to redeem a Basket of Shares will receive the Basket Silver Amount in exchange for each Basket surrendered. JP Morgan Chase Bank, N.A., London Branch will be the custodian for the Trust and responsible for safekeeping the silver.” Followed by footnote 29.

Footnote 29 states: “If the total value of the Trust’s silver held by the Custodian exceeds $1 billion, then the Custodian will be under no obligation to accept additional silver deliveries. In such a case, the Trustee will retain an additional custodian.”

This is a very interesting footnote. Basically, JP Morgan Chase is going to be responsible for $1 billion worth of silver and that is it. Again, what is $1 billion worth of silver at $10 per ounce? One hundred million ounces—approximately the amount we think could be obtained in one fashion or another. We will continue to watch as the silver ETF story unfolds.

It is our understanding that long term gains in the gold (silver) ETFs would be taxed as collectibles at 28 percent, according to the gold ETF prospectus. However, Ian McAvity pointed out that Central Fund of Canada (“CEF”) is considered a passive foreign investment company with shares not convertible into bullion. CEF is believed to qualify as a PFIC to enable the 15 percent capital gains tax treatment, which can be an important factor for investors.” End quote.

Later in the April report we had this to say, Ted Butler brought out an interesting aspect of the proposed silver ETF this month. Ted stated, “neither the SEC, nor the CFTC, nor any industry official has questioned how these ETFs are an end-run around existing commodity regulation. And that’s especially true of the gold ETFs which have been trading now for a while.”

He went on to state, “I think everyone overlooked the issue of no limits or reporting of large positions in the commodity ETFs. That’s a shock to me.”

Ted thinks there is a chance that someday the regulators will have to rescind, or somehow restrict, the ETFs.

At this point in time May 10, 2006 the Silver ETF has 53,996,254 ounces of silver in trust and is selling at a 4.5% premium. The Silver ETF has a current value of approximately $773 million which means we are already about three-fourths of the level that JP Morgan will be “under no obligation to accept additional silver deliveries” emphasis ours.

What will this mean for the silver market? What if physical demand continues at the current pace? The amount of physical silver put into trust from Silver ETFs first day of trading to present time is nearly 54 million ounces of silver. This is in less than ten days of trading.

What will happen when the total value of the silver exceeds the one billion dollars? Certainly these questions will provide many with material to keep the silver market commentaries coming.

On Saturday April 6, 2006 we sent the following to our paid subscribers.

The news on silver continues to flow. We received the following from a very close source:

At Berkshire meeting now....he said they sold all silver. He said he got in early and got out early. No sell price/date data given. Says he would rather hold businesses that have earnings. He thought "copper and some other commodities" are in a bubble. Didn't really talk about silver other than he sold it.

We want to thank this most trusted source and are almost certain there will be some articles on the Internet soon.

Many have commented that it is nearly impossible to deliver the amounts of physical silver into the vaults without the silver already resting in place. Berkshire Hathaway’s silver was in London and Barclays Silver ETF is in London, is it the same silver?

Take a guess.
gioia23 ha scritto:
Questo è quanto scrivono W: Buffett e C. Munger in occasione dell'assemblea degli azionisti l'altra settimana:

Dovessi scegliere tra lo scetticismo di Buffett e la bullishness di certi commenti, sceglierei sicuramente il primo, scrivere oro a 30.000$/oncia e come chi vedeva il nasdaq a 10000 nel 1999...


Buffet ha spesso ragione ma non sempre...
scrivere oro a 30.000$/oncia significa vedere che cosa è il dollaro: carta straccia.

Buffet fa parte del sistema... e tale sistema intende preservare.
Commodity sotto tiro Manovre sull'argento

Sissi Bellomo 11 novembre 2010

Lo spettro dei fratelli Hunt è tornato ad aggirarsi sul mercato dell'argento, dopo l'improvvisa e violenta correzione che in meno di ventiquattr'ore ne ha fatto crollare di oltre il 10% le quotazioni, fino a poco prima ai massimi trentennali. Rialzi record, seguiti ieri da una correzione, hanno interessato nelle ultime settimane quasi tutte le materie prime. Il metallo prezioso è stato tuttavia oggetto di attenzioni privilegiate da parte degli investitori: dall'inizio dell'anno fino a martedì il suo prezzo segnava un rialzo superiore al 60% e nelle ultime ore le manovre speculative si sono fatte frenetiche, al punto da riportare alla mente quello che successe tra il 1979 e il 1980, quando Nelson e Herbert Hunt, figli di un petroliere texano, misero in atto uno dei maggiori tentativi di "cornering" del dopoguerra. Per mesi i due fratelli accumularono una enorme quantità di futures sull'argento, arrivando a controllare oltre un terzo dell'intera offerta mondiale del metallo. Per effetto dei loro acquisti le quotazioni salirono da circa 11 dollari l'oncia nel settembre 1979 a un record storico – tuttora inviolato – di 50,35 $/oz nel marzo 1980. Il "gioco" finì giovedì 27 marzo, il fatidico Silver Thursday: il Comex, in risposta alle numerose proteste degli altri trader, aveva irrigidito le regole sul deposito di margini e gli Hunt non furono in grado di versare gli 1,7 miliardi di margin calls che la borsa pretendeva. Il risultato fu un crollo repentino delle quotazioni dell'argento: -50% nel giro di quattro sedute.
Quello che sta succedendo oggi potrebbe non essere il frutto di manipolazioni altrettanto ardite. Tuttavia qualcosa di insolito – se non addirittura sospetto – sta certamente accadendo. Tutto è cominciato martedì sera, quando guarda caso il Comex ha deciso di alzare del 30% i margini sull'argento, da 5.000 a 6.500 dollari per contratto. La notizia non era ancora neppure stata battuta dalle agenzie di stampa, quando i volumi di scambio relativi all'argento si sono impennati (a fine giornata erano ai massimi storici, con 196.052 lotti) e le quotazioni hanno preso a scivolare, dal picco trentennale di 29,34 $/oz della mattinata fino a poco più di 26 $/oz nel dopo borsa. Analogamente, anche l'iShare Silver, il maggiore Etf sull'argento fisico, è balzato al centro dell'attenzione dei trader, con contrattazioni circa dieci volte superiori alla media degli ultimi 50 giorni. L'ondata di vendite è stata così violenta che alcuni analisti vi attribuiscono ripercussioni sul dollaro, anch'esso oggetto martedì sera di uno scossone (al rialzo) apparentemente inspiegabile.

Almeno per l'argento una spiegazione forse c'è: la memoria dei fratelli Hunt potrebbe essere tuttora così viva da riuscire a scatenare il panico. Tanto più in un periodo in cui la Commodity Futures Trading Commission sta, per sua stessa ammissione, indagando su una sospetta manipolazione del mercato. E mentre ben due cause, entrambe a carico di JpMorgan e Hsbc, sono state appena depositate per lo stesso motivo alla corte distrettuale di Manhattan.

Fonte: Il Sole 24 Ore
Come tutti già saprete, in questi giorni l'argento sta facendo scintille (40% di guadagno secco dal 10 novembre) :eek:
Ora, leggendo qua e là sembra che una parte dei problemi sia imputabile a uno sciopero nelle miniere messicane (le più ricche al mondo), ma la questione di fondo sta nel fatto che, mentre l'oro non si consuma, l'argento invece viene usato a piene mani nell'industria, con il risultato che, mentre fino a pochi anni fa l'argento estratto era pari a 5 volte l'oro, ora è vera la situazione contraria :eek:
Ergo, attualmente l'argento disponibile è ai livelli di quanto presente nel 1300 circa.
A fronte di tutto questo, alcuni (non i soliti folli) prevedono un prezzo finale dell'argento attorno ai 100$ all'oncia.
Cosa ne pensate?
Avete altre informazioni di prima mano?

Perché ti stupisci del prezzo dell'AG?
Per secoli il rapporto oro/argento è stato di 12-13 a 1.
Quindi con l'oro a 1400 $ oncia, l'argento dovrebbe valere almeno 100 $ l'oncia!